An Ocean Voyage with our President/CEO

In this Article

November 5th, 2002

0000-0400 Denis on. Breeze at steady 20 gusting 25kts. 
0300 After a couple of big puffs Denis gives me a shout. I call for all hands to putting in third reef in the main. I know am being overly cautious but I’m still alive after all these year for that reason. Boats easier to handle and being short handed we won’t have to do this in the height of the gale.
0400-0800 Noel on. 

0800-1200 Winds building to solid 25kts with puffs to 30kts. Wind and seas on the head, blowing from WSW. Pounding into confused seas in 
the shallows 200 miles off South Western end of Bermuda. Motor sailing to hold course and speed. Boat speed dropping.

1200-1600 Denis on. Breeze up to steady Full Force 8 gale , 32 -34 kts. We thought Herb was kidding. Breeze still on the Head, and pounding into big confused seas, with engines on. I decide to shorten watch sections to 2 hours per watch. 
1600-2000 David and Noel

2000-2100 David On. Turn off engine. Still blowing Force 8 with higher puffs. Wind on the nose big ass seas .Boat Speed 6-7kts. Decide to pull out roller headsail to a small handkerchief ,can’t hurt as we head close hauled into the teeth of howling gale. Underway with triple reefed main and handkerchief forward.

2100- 2400 Denis on. Waves breaking over the enclosure. Pitch black cold, wind howling and miserable. The auto pilot is a Godsend but every once in a while goes crazy so the boat must be followed carefully and brought back to course when this happens. The compass is a bitch to see and bringing the boat back is often tough.